Yes, It's Possible To Overbeat Whipped Cream

What would strawberry shortcakes, ice cream sundaes, chocolate cream pie, berries and cream, or pumpkin pie be without whipped cream? The point is, as Martha Stewart explains, that whipped cream can elevate almost any dessert. And while it may be more convenient to buy the stuff in plastic tubs or aluminum spray cans, the single best way to enjoy whipped cream is to make it at home yourself.

Making whipped cream is deceptively simple. All you need is heavy whipping cream and your own two hands ... or a stand mixer if you'd rather not whisk by hand. Sugar and a little vanilla will lift the cream by adding a hint of spice and sweetness. The final consistency of the whipped cream is entirely up to you — you could have a soft, silky cream with shallow peaks or a medium cream with stiff peaks. However, there is a potential pitfall to making your own whipped cream: over-beating. Yes, it is possible, but there are remedies to fix over-whipped cream.

How to fix over-whipped cream

According to King Arthur Baking, it only takes a few seconds for a gloriously soft whipped cream to turn into a thick, unappetizing, chunky mess. Though it may take time for the cream to firm up, once it has, the margin for error narrows dramatically. Walking away from your mixer once the cream has gotten airy would be unwise, as you'll likely return to a bowl of forming butter, as the milk fats accrete from too much mixing. If you've gone too far in this direction, it may seem like you'll need to start again, but there's an easy way to fix your whipped cream.

Martha Stewart explains there is no reason to panic if your cream has been over-beaten. The simple solution is to add more un-whipped heavy cream one tablespoon at a time, gently folding it into the over-beaten mixture. Continue to add and fold until you've regained your silky consistency. 

Of course, if you have enough remaining cream and would rather start fresh, you can always finish whipping the cream into homemade butter, as Cuisine at Home suggests. The mixer essentially acts as a high-speed butter churn, so all you need to do is rinse and drain the excess liquid from the butter, pack it into a crock or mold, and pop it in the fridge. Doing this provides the benefit of having unintentionally made homemade butter and, incidentally, added another skill to your kitchen arsenal.